Information Systems for Environmental Sustainability

IT, Resource Productivity, Environmental Preservation, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution

New Book “The Sustainable MBA”

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There’s a new book out, “The Sustainable MBA” by Giselle Weybrecht, which according to the marketing blurb I received in an email today “brings together all the pieces of the business and sustainability puzzle.”

A quick scan of the table of contents reveals chapters on accounting, economics, entrepreneurship, ethics, finance, marketing, operations, organizational behavior, and strategy.

However, there’s no chapter on information systems, i.e., the information infrastructure that will enable the capture, storage, display, reporting, and sharing of critical environmental data and information as well as analytics enabling linkage to financial metrics; that will enable collaboration within and among organizations regarding sustainability; etc. Why is this omission important?

  • Reflects larger pattern of treating information systems implicitly, when they often can be make or break and should be treated explicitly (see infamous failures such as those at Nike, KMart, FBI, IRS, Denver Airport, FAA, Hilton hotels, etc.)
  • Studying past IS project failures reveals that the top two sources of failure are not rooted in technology but are rooted in process and people issues (see Nelson’s study). Surely “The Sustainable MBA” needs to understand the process and people issues associated with IS for sustainability, e.g., carbon management systems for ensuring reliable data capture and reporting?

My chapter on IS and sustainability for the Oxford University Handbook on Business and the Environment (in process) will hopefully fill an important knowledge gap in this area.

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Author: nigelpm

Associate Professor of Information Systems, Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan - Helping organizations to navigate digital transformation.

One thought on “New Book “The Sustainable MBA”

  1. Pingback: CMS Questions at Green:Net conference « Information Systems for Environmental Sustainability

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